Syracuse was one of the first four out of the tournament on Selection Sunday.
As a result the Orange will be competing in the NIT tournament, a fate that coach Jim Boeheim felt was decided before the season was over.
“I think they knew we were going to be in the NIT about a week ago,” Boeheim said. “That’s what I think.”
Syracuse finished the season 18-14 and was bounced from the ACC tournament in the second round. When Boeheim was asked whether he thought the premature decision on Syracuse’s fate was fair: Boeheim was candid:
“I don’t think so but (Minton) got every indication that Syracuse would be in the NIT over a week ago,” he added. “The way they said it I believe that’s absolutely true. The way the (NCAA Selection Committee) chairman came out and said, they were 2-11 and that’s it.”
Boeheim was adamant about the decision having been made early based on a conversation he had with NIT president Reggie Minton a week prior to the decision. He also expressed his frustration with the way the selection committed decides which teams are invited to the tournament.
The selection process has been criticized often in the past for it’s inexact and inconsistent nature. Boeheim was critical of the fact that the committee didn’t take into account the non-conference schedule the way it has in the past, and bemoaned the fact that teams were seeded highly despite their lack of competitive non-conference games.
Syracuse had a disappointing season, to be sure. Boeheim will look to play well in the NIT and rebound next season, returning the Orange to the prominence they’ve grown accustomed to.